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CONCEPT: Present the flux of digital culture
in the networked environment of the Internet
as a two month exhibition at the List
Visual Arts Center at MIT.

October 1, 1996, Tuesday:
Remo comes over to my place to talk about what we will present to Katy Kline from MIT. I draw bubble diagrams so we can visualize what we are thinking about. The field/metafield model seems workable.

October 2, Wednesday:
Remo and Rob meet with Katy to talk about the possibility of exhibit at MIT. Joined by GH, Marek and Ebon. She takes notes and will present to her board for approval. Marek sees field/metafield map and thinks of collage. Ebon sees it and thinks of Web Jam but suggests we should create something beautiful rather than show the technology.

October 3, Thursday:
Adrianne back in town. We go to bar after Art Dirt (Muntadas) and I give her brief rundown of what we are thinking about. She's excited and starts thinking of ideas for projects.

October 4, Friday:
Remo goes over to Adrianne's and talks to her. She tells Heather we want her input and she calls me to ask if I'll be on a panel at the New School and to ask me to be her date for the Prom. I'll spend weekend writing up notes for MIT including thoughts on Kosuth, Wittgenstein, Snow Crash and Windows metaphor.

Adrianne likes the idea of "window of belief" from a Kosuth quote Rob sent her earlier. Says that's what she's trying to do with her work.

October 8, Tuesday
Remo writes first draft of the proposal and sends it to Rob. He's created the basic structure of the "site" and Rob develops context based on Kosuth "Window of Belief" quote found in a statement by Joseph Nechvatal: "The illusion of the window of belief in both painting and philosophy remains, today, as a deus ex machina holding the viewer's position in check."

Rob locates the exhibition "between" Kosuth in the next gallery and the MIT Media Lab in the rest of the building. With Ebon Fisher's concept of a "post-ironic" generation of artists developing Rob decides technology is giving the artist an opportunity to stop "drawing the curtain of irony over the window" in order to acknowledge and critique the illusion by creating a multiplicity of windows of belifs, hence the title of the exhibition: WINDOWs of BELIEFs. Truth reveals itself in excess.

R&R agree this is a good strategy to follow -- bridges and conduits between conceptual art and media technology.

October 9, Wednesday
R&R talk about the new ideas and what needs to be claified by Rob. Remo sends revision to Rob who gets preoccupied and doesn't work on it that night.

October 10, Thursday
Remo is angry with Rob for not working on the proposal because he wants to fax it to Katy at MIT by noon today. Rob goes into office and they work on it together. Remo faxes it to Katy who likes it but wants to have a conference call with the rest of her staff the next Tuesday to make the final decision.

Remo, Rob, GH Hovagimyan and Adrianne Wortzel meet in the late afternoon to start thinking about the next steps to take and possibilities for artists and projects. No final plans can be made until greenlighted by MIT but everyone feels optimistic that it will be. Once the OK is given we will have a meeting with Remo, Ebon and Marek to start planning the architecture of the physical "site" and inviting artists to participate.

We decide a listserv is the first thing to be created and consider asking Rhizome Internet if they would like to run it as their participation in the exhibition. Otherwise we will run it ourselves.

October 11, Friday
Remo researches equipment requirements to give to MIT next Tuesday. He wants all Pentiums because of the metaworlds, Rob and GH want at least one Mac for text-to-speech and other Mac things.

Remo sets up meeting with Black Sun Technologies next week to see about using their metaworld during the exhibition. Remo and Marek like it better than Alphaworld as it is closer to VRML.

Blast is starting to firm up its publication and exhibit at Sandra Gering and we consider how we can use that as the warm-up to MIT.

October 15, Tuesday
R&R have conference call with Katy and her MIT staff. They have reservations about what is going to be shown and how they can square it with their mission to present the best available work if they aren't sure what will be shown. R&R explain how participants will be invited for their knowledge and use of the network but that there will be a very real experimental aspect to much of the work. A listserv and Web site set up now will attempt to help devise curatorial criteria and develop projects that will work within the parameters of the exhibition.Use of listserv will be the minimum requirement for participation.

The MIT staff will be an integral part of all the planning. Continuous documentation will help with building future models for this kind of exhibition. This is as much an educational experience for the presenters as it is for the participants and public.

Katy gives the green light and will send a letter of agreement.

First priority is to set up listserv and Web site and to hold a meeting of the architects of the space. Questions about hardware and how it will be obtained still need to be resolved. Didactic material needs to be created. How to issue a call for paticipation?

Rob GH and Adrianne go to the opening of the Jasper Johns exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art to celebrate. Remo is left behind to teach his HTML class.

October 16, Wednesday
R&R meet for lunch to refine proposal for presentation to participants. The idea of continuous programing throughout run of exhibit starts to look too much like TV. Focus on one aspect (like Black Sun virtual world) on big screen with intermitant programs (like Art Dirt or meetings) scheduled. Daily "newsletter" sent out by listserv and available at the gallery will keep those interested informed about time-specific events.

Appointment with someone from Black Sun tomorrow in the storefront to talk about using the software for our metaworld.

Adrianne says she may have made a connection in Boston who could help out.

October 17, Thursday
We meet with Chris Stuart, Technical Support Manager, Black Sun Interactive (chris@blacksun.com, http://www.blacksun.com) at the artnetweb storefront. Chris is a young man, American (Black Sun is a German company), with a ponytail. Marek uploads a VRML world to their server to experiment with.

One of the first things many people think of doing with VRML is recreating the physical world exactly. Programmers are trying to create gravity while we think it is good that there is no gravity in the metaworld. Chris uses the example of a nightclub where customers enter, sit down and watch a show on stage. It takes enormous resources and bandwith to recreate that experience when we should be creating experiences that take advantages of VRML

Marek and Rob both think it is a good idea to create a VRML gallery space based on the List Center so that we can make a correspondence between the metaworld and the physical and explore how the physical and the metaworld are different from each other.

Rob posts a message to the museum-l listserv asking if anyone is working with VRML or metaworlds. Two responses so far: one from Elizabeth Kidd from the University of British Columbia who is working on a similar exhibition, and one from Erich K. Schroeder, Associate Curator of Anthropology, GIS Lab, Illinois State Museum. Both are interested in what we find out. Erich is also working with QTVR (as is GH).

October 18, Friday
Remo goes to a vrml conference co-hosted by Black Sun and networks, meets director of vrml marketing for SGI who attended MIT in both computer and art departments. The presentations were very "back room" business oriented where "art" means film studios.

R&R meet later in the day and talk about the parameters of the exhibition. Consider that it might be wise to limit the amount of "broadcast" projects in order to consentrate on interactive projects. Also that the best thing would be to present alternatives (windows) to the business model (window) being developed by industry.

Katy sends formal acceptance for the exhibition with budget and a few of their questions, mainly about the issue of "quality" and also stressing "visual" and copyright.

Marek sends Rob email explaining the GIS format for vrml where images also collect and deliver information (ie: a road would report on traffic). In development by "non-artists" it seems very interesting.

Remo will call the owner of our server to get details about setting up the listserv and other necessary technical issues.

Rob receives email from a conservator who is organizing a conference about conservation of digital media using traditional conservation techniques. How do you conserve/preserve something that is interactive?

October 19, Saturday
Rob searches the Internet for possible participants. Finds TechnoSphere but it isn't up and running. Sends message to them asking when it will be as they promised the new version would be running last summer.

October 21, Monday
R&R, and Marek meet with Ebon at his place in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, to discuss the possibilities of architecting the physical space. Marek is late and the others talk about their views on "art". Ebon says it's a useless term and doesn't use it. Rob maintains that since they will be working in an institution that classifies itself as a "visual arts center" they have to engage that term in some way, no matter how they personally chose to use, or not use, it.

According to Ebon The Media Lab rejects the term "art" and the public defines it as something pretty for the wall or entertaining to look at so why not use this opportunity to define new terms and create a new paradigm to work from that isn't so elitist. Remo points out that at the VRML meeting he attended whenever the people developing VRML mention art or content they mean Hollywood. Rob mentions that his mother doesn't think of art at all.

Marek arrives and is filled in. They eat dinner in Ebon's "Alula Dimension", a cube shape he has constructed in his living space with "tunnels" to other worlds. He proposes this as a model for what will be in the MIT space and sketches variations that could be possibilities. Main point is to construct the space as a "meeting ground" and "meta-node" for other nodes. Light is explored as a possibility. Rob feels it is important to provide a space that takes into account the outside (winter) the gallery on the other side of the wall (Kosuth) and the rest of the building (The Media Lab) as well as other nodes and metaworlds.

Rob draws his "tumbleweed" for Marek so he can create an avatar for it.

The title "WINDOWs of BELIEFs" doesn't work. Rob wants to keep it as the theme of the exhibition but agrees that a better title can be found. No suggestions. Something that will link Kosuth, The Media Lab, Outside, and other worlds and nodes.

Remo gives Marek gallery plans faxed by Katy so he can create online world based on it. Rob will build a physical model.

"Temple" appeals to both Ebon and Rob.

Various suggestions by Ebon but real designing can't be done until he has a definite list of elements to be involved. He believes the exhibition should be very clear in what it represents and make a definite statement that will be understandable to the Lab people. Rob says there are two kinds of exhibitions: Discovery and Narrative. This should be a combination of the two since there will be visitors of different levels. Katy has requested educational material be presented. A reading room is suggested as both a place for didactic material and a "lounge" for Lab people. Everyone likes that concept.

Nothing resolved. Remo promises to give Ebon a more defined list of elements. Walking to the subway Marek remarks that this project is much more difficult that he'd imagined.

October 22, Tuesday
Marek creates tumbleweed avatar for Rob. R&R try to insert it into Black Sun without success. Remo meets with Matthew Drutt of the Guggenheim to show him VRML. Rob works on different versions of tumbleweed using words.

October 23, Wednesday
Various phone calls and discussions about how to go about forming the List space. Decided that Remo will do it with Rob and the input of Ebon, Marek and others. R&R talk about the need for a "meeting" area that could be a lounge as Ebon suggested.

Marek creates VRML version of the space.

Marek and Rob meet with other members of VRML SIG in the Black Sun space. Lots of tumbling and bumping into each other. Something wrong with one of the avatars using a background color.

Rob suggests the name "Rendezvous" for exhibit and awaits response. Rendezvous is an agreed upon meeting place and has a slightly illicit air about it. He feels it is in sync with the concept of "protocols" used by the Internet.

October 26, Saturday
Adrianne and Remo meet to discuss her participation on Friday. One of her suggestions is a wall-size "chalkboard" for visitors to draw/write on. A video cam would be set up to make it accessible from the Web site.

Rob puts rough version of the Web site up for response. Adrianne says that it should be done so that people really read it and understand what the exhibition is about, not just look for submission date/slide info.

A "Call for Participation" must be completed this week so people will understand how to develop the kinds of proposals we are looking for. We want to "plug-in" to existing projects rather than have participants think in terms of new projects commissioned for the exhibit.

Listserv must be functioning by the end of the week.

Marek is creating more 3-D models of the List space incorporating some of the ideas that have been suggested. Rob will build a physical model for the office.

October 27 - 31, Sunday - Thursday
R&R develop Work-Flow Schedule as an organization model for this and future projects
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